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Skilled Day Care For Frail Seniors And Disabled Adults Will Continue

Aired 11/18/11 on KPBS News.

Some 35,000 frail seniors and disabled adults in California may still be able to get skilled day care services, thanks to a new settlement.

— The state of California has reached a settlement with disability advocates over the planned shutdown of adult care health care services. The agreement allows the services to continue, under a new name and with more federal funding.

Some 300 adult day health care centers statewide were set to close December 1 due to state budget cuts. The non-profit Disability Rights California sued, saying its clients would have been forced into institutions.

Elissa Gershon is the group's lead attorney. She said under the settlement, the new program will look like the current one.

"It will be a center-based program that will provide the same range of services to people, nursing and health care and therapies and social support, and will be funded at the same rate that adult day health care is funded," Gershon said.

Statewide, some 35,000 medically fragile seniors and disabled adults currently receive state-funded adult day health care. It's unclear how many of them will qualify for the new program, which is scheduled to start on March 1.

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